Imaging with Dell hidden partitions

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by Bruce Mahnke, Dec 12, 2005.

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  1. Bruce Mahnke

    Bruce Mahnke Registered Member

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    System: DELL Dimension 4700, Windows XP Home Ed w/SP2
    C: drive: 80 GB Internal SATA, 1-partition plus 2 hidden Dell partitions.
    D: drive: 300 GB Internal SATA, 1-partition.

    Objective:
    Create a restorable full image only of the C: drive with its system image and the two Dell hidden partitions and store it on the D: drive.

    Question: Can this be accomplished with either True Image 8, build 937 or True Image 9, build 2323? I would like to consider both products.

    Best regards,
    Bruce
     
  2. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Hello Bruce,

    Provided you can create a working bootable rescue CD (i.e. after booting from the CD, TI detects both of your hard drives) then either 8 Build 937 or 9 Build 2323 will accomplish what you said you require. Just make sure that you include the MBR in your full image by ticking the little checkbox next to disk number. The same applies if you ever need to restore to a replacement hard drive, otherwise the new drive will not boot. See Screenshots below.

    Also worth pointing out that, if you are tempted to create a True Image Secure Zone, do NOT accept the default option to also activate the Startup Recovery Manager. Doing so will overwrite your Dell proprietary MBR and prevent you accessing Dell's hidden Recovery partition (the hidden Diagnostic partition would be unaffected).

    Regards
     

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  3. bobdat

    bobdat Registered Member

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    Just to expand a little on Menorcaman's expertise....

    Creating the image of your Dell drive is the easy part but only if you have not yet made any changes to the original drive such as repartitioning or removing any of the Dell-installed restore software on the C partition.

    Any such changes to the original Dell-imaged drive will have changed the master boot record and therefore rendered the Dell PC Restore partition unusable even though it's still present and even though you can still include it in your image creation and restore. It's just that the CTL + F11 function won't work.

    If you haven't made any mbr-related changes yet then your objectives should be met easily. However, you will need to create an Acronis Recovery CD to boot from when you want to restore the image you stored on the D drive back to the C drive. Otherwise, restoring the image requires you to depend upon running TrueImage under Windows and rebooting and reentering all information after the reboot - not the most convenient process to restore an image. And, if Windows is dysfunctional, that won't be allowed so the boot CD is necessary.

    In summary, I do what you want to do almost daily on my Dells. Although I own both TI8 and TI9, I have 100% success and confidence in TI8 v937 to create and restore images as you want to do. I simply can't trust TI9 yet. Your results may vary.
     
  4. Bruce Mahnke

    Bruce Mahnke Registered Member

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    Thank you both, these are very helpful responses. I will probably stay with TI 8 for a while in that I have both versions. Have successfuly created an image with Ghost 2003 but it appears that the hidden partitions were not included and at the moment I can't risk restoring using that image. I find TI 8, build 937 to be very solid.

    Thank you both once again.

    Bruce
     
  5. Butch66

    Butch66 Guest

    do NOT accept the default option to also activate the Startup Recovery Manager. Doing so will overwrite your Dell proprietary MBR

    Dang!

    Read this a bit too late?

    No possible way to restore the master boot record?

    From what I have read in the help files, it said that removing the secure zone will revert back taking out the F-11 boot option.

    Is there any way now to create an ISO image of the secure zone to put them on DVD's now that I screwed up?

    And is there anyway to get rid of the Dell partion that is now rendered usless.

    Any help is appreciated. I need this back up.

    Butch
     
  6. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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  7. Bruce Mahnke

    Bruce Mahnke Registered Member

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    Thank you. These are very informative links.

    Bruce
     
  8. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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  9. Butch66

    Butch66 Guest

    Brain,

    Thanks! Looks like good information that I could use. I did find a spot on Dells website to enter a service number and download all the drivers.

    Im just planning a course of action for a possible crash.

    I really dont like the "Secure Zone" either from Dell or Acronis. If the hard drive fries, then what good is it. I mean its a neat utility but not effective in an emergency.

    Im still havng trouble getting True Image to burn a DVD of a backup but no lick as of yet. I have Nero installed but still to no avail.

    Is there anyway to get into the secure zone and burn to DVD from that area? 12G is a bit much for CD's.

    Again, Thanks Brian. I will review these links tonight.

    Butch
     
  10. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Butch, how large is your HD? Do you have a second HD? Any partitions on your hard drives? How much used and free space on your drives?
     
  11. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Hi Butch,

    You can't access an image in the SZ other than to Explore or Restore it via True Image.

    You will need to create a new image outside of the SZ, choosing TI's "Manually Split" option to create the image in DVD sized chunks. You can then use Nero to burn the .tib files to DVD as either DVD-ROM (ISO) or DVD-ROM (UDF) compilations. Please check out my post in this previous thread titled <Peace of Mind> for more information.

    Regards
     
  12. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Hi Menorcaman,

    I always enjoy reading your posts. You mentioned

    On my first HD I have 5 partitions. Two OS and two program partitions along with a large data partition. I image the first 4 partitions (single images) but I never image the data partition. I have restored these images on many occasions and the drive is always bootable. Admittedly I use Ghost 9 on this computer but I use Acronis TI 8 on another similar computer with OS, program and data partitions and I have never imaged the whole drive.

    On both computers I've experienced HD failures and I've restored single images to the new HD and copied data to the data partition. I do however partition the new drive prior to restoring the images so everything does look like the previous drive.

    I wonder why people here insist on imaging the whole drive. Imaging a data partition seems less efficient to me than doing a data backup with say Second Copy.

    Just a question seeking further knowledge.
     
  13. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Hi Brian,

    My guess is that, on those occassions, you've restored the partial images back to the original, serviceable, HD. The HD will still have retained it's original MBR therefore it didn't require one from the image.

    Had you restored your partial image straight to a bare "out of the box" replacement drives you would not have been able to boot from it. By partitioning (fdisk ?) the new drive you will have created a new MBR and hence it didn't matter that the partial image didn't contain the original one.

    Regards
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2005
  14. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    That's what I suspected. I used Partition Magic. Thanks mate.
     
  15. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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  16. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Hi Brian,

    You are not wrong when you say that Dan Goodell is gifted. I discovered his web site over a year ago and was so impressed that its URL has resided in my Favorites folder ever since. Indeed, I have often provided links to it in this Forum, especially the section that deals with fixing Win2K/XP drive letters using a Win98 boot floppy <(Method #3 "Kawecki's Trick")>.

    Regards
     
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